Brent and I were planning to spend the day celebrating our 9 year anniversary, little did I know what the day would bring and how memorable July 23, 2011 would always be. The surprise date began in LA, having lunch at a cute restaurant in Hollywood called Tender Greens, and then it was off to the next surprise.
Brent told me that we were going to Universal City Walk, which got me no closer to figuring out what we were doing. We finally arrived at iFly, an indoor skydiving place, where an instructor takes you into this enclosed area with a huge fan under you simulating skydiving. I was nervous about being in this glass area with a bunch of tourists staring at me, but it was a really fun idea and we now have a dvd for us to remember it by haha. Brent and I always joked about going skydiving when we’re 80 years old, and now we don’t have to anymore ;)
The next planned activity for the date was going to a shooting range in Artesia. I had mentioned it to him months ago that I think it’d be cool to just try it one time. Ironically, when I was back east for Krista’s wedding a few weeks ago, I ended up shooting guns for the first time. No wonder Brent wasn’t as excited about it when I told him I had shot guns in a backyard ;) The shooting range was an adventure for both of us. Walking in, it was obvious to everyone we were not gun nuts. We walked to the counter and said, “We don’t know anything about guns, what do you recommend?” We ended up shooting a 22 caliber and a 9mm glock (i think?!), and I shot the heck out of my target’s tummy. I guess I don’t have a killer shot haha. Driving back to OC, I joked with Brent saying how adventurous our date was so far. If someone didn’t know better, they’d think the date was designed for Brent instead of me. I guess I’ve always had a tomboy side to me.
I knew the last part of the date was dinner somewhere in Laguna Beach. We drove back to his place, changed, and Brent said he had one more surprise planned. As we entered Laguna Beach, he turned down a small side street leading to park overlooking the cliffs and beach called Crescent Bay Point Park. The day was beautiful, the skies were clear and the ocean surprisingly blue.
We walked around for a while, took some pictures, and he eventually gave me my gift and asked me to open it. I found inside the box one of those old school red view-master’s we all had as a child and he asked me to look through it. At this point, I started to freak out a little because I had a pretty good feeling what might be coming. Through the view-master I saw pictures from the beginning of our relationship up until this year and the last picture was him by himself standing at the very spot we were currently at, holding a flyer.
I looked up, somewhat confused and nervous, and he was standing there holding the same flyer as the picture - a flyer to the Harvest Crusade 2002 - the day he first asked me out to be his girlfriend. He got down on one knee, told me he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me, and asked me to marry him.
I don’t think words can express how I felt at that moment, but I’m sure anyone who’s been engaged can relate. The complete shock of the unexpected and the excitement of it all was overwhelming. Tears of joy and excitement rolled down my cheeks as I said yes to marrying my best friend. A couple said “Congratulations” about 10 seconds after it happened, and I couldn’t even look up or say anything because I was pretty much speechless!
Not to mention, we ate dinner at Splashes, a beautiful restaurant on the beach, as the sun set. He had planned to have both my parents and his family meet us afterwards for dessert, a perfect ending to an amazing day. Three days later, the shock and surprise of it all still has not worn off. I can’t believe I have a fiance!
I can only praise God for His faithfulness shown over and over in our relationship and in each of our lives. It is obvious that He has been leading us and has been a part of our relationship through the years because there’s no way a 14 and 16 year old knew what was in store for them 9 years ago. It is by His grace and love that He can bring two imperfect people together. In a nutshell, we love because He first loved us (1 John 4:19).
Yesterday, I finished my first session of summer school! This has actually been the first time I’ve ever taken summer school since kindergarten (which I don’t count!) and initially I was really really bummed. Everything seemed to remind me that it was summer, but I was not a part of it. Friends were ending school, some were graduating, people going to the beach, hanging out on week nights (how grandma like do I sound?), and even the beautiful weather were taunting my summer life. Buuuuut life goes on, I adjusted, and I felt better that my classmates reminded me that I’m not the ONLY one in school during the summer ;)
This first summer session was a lot of firsts for me. We had our first fieldwork, which is the exciting part of school where you can hopefully apply what you’re learning…hopefully. The focus of this semester’s fieldwork is adolescence and mental health. I was placed with 9 other of my classmates at a high school in South Central LA to work with a group of student in the special ed program once a week. Our focus was to help them improve their social skills because many of them have cognitive or behavioral problems and don’t have the skill sets to appropriately behave and interact with their peers. So we led them in games and activities each week to help them work on teamwork, cooperation, problem solving, and teaching them how this can apply to real world situations. It was really fun, and the students were awesome. In the short amount of time, I do feel like we made an impact on them, and I hope they continue to receive the support and resources they need. There were positive and negative aspects of the experience, but it was a good opportunity to wet my feet in the OT world. I am a lot more excited for our next fieldwork in the fall for pediatrics :)
Do I think that I will want to work with this population? As of right now, I’m leaning towards no. As enjoyable as it was, I think that I’m drawn towards more physical rehabilitation or something much more tangible and easily measurable than mental health. But who knows? I do have much more of an appreciation for the adolescent population in general. There is a lot that teenagers have to deal with (that even they aren’t really aware of) and to be a source of support to guide their development is pretty cool.
Another “first” for me was writing up a case study on one of the clients I observed in fieldwork. This was an assignment where I had to give background and information on the client’s history (through observations, interviews, IEPs, and asking the teachers), present evidence-based research that might help her, write two treatment goals, and two interventions I would choose to address the goals. At first it sounded like a headache, and actually it was pretty tough writing it too, but it was one of the first times I felt like I had to think like an OT. I had to assess what the needs of the client were, find research to back up my intervention, and create activities that will benefit the client as well as keep them motivated. It was kinda cool to start using the little bit of clinical reasoning I have developed over the year.
One more nerdy “first” that I’ll write about…I wrote a research proposal with two others for the first time. Research seriously gives me a headache, especially when I have so many other things to think about, but I am pretty excited about our research study. We plan to research adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder or Asperger Syndrome and their romantic relationships. It’s an important part of most adults’ lives, and we wanted to know if it was the same/different/existent/non-existent for people with ASD or AS. Sooooo if any of you know people who have ASD or AS and you think they’d be willing to be interviewed, send them my way! :)
This first session has had its ups and downs, but God is so gracious and continues to uphold me through the times when I feel weak and vulnerable. I feel blessed that I have this opportunity to be in OT school. Each little milestone I reach, I feel just that much closer to reaching my goal.
Here’s a picture of some of my classmates at Sgt. Peppers in LB! Sometimes we have fun too :)
Is it confusing to anyone else that if you are a preacher (aka you read and studied the Bible) wouldn’t you know that it says that no one will know when the end times will come? Matthew 24:36-55 says:
36 “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son,[f] but only the Father. 37 As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 38 For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark;39 and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 40 Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left.
42 “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. 43 But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into. 44 So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.
I’m not quite sure where it says May 21, 2011 in there. Or apparently the new date of October 21, 2011 for that matter. I just feel that if you’re going to spend your life savings or quit your job, you should probably check the source? Whether you believe the Bible is a credible source or not in the first place, I do not understand why people put their trust in this one man’s opinion.
Sorry, random annoyance of the day.
I’m so excited to say that I have finished my first semester of OT school! It may sound pretty insignificant, but when I think about all the changes, accomplishments, new friendships, and experiences, it was far from insignificant. There’s so much to process, but there are a few things I want to touch on.
1. I’ve met some amazing people in OT school. The whole age difference weirdness has worn off. We’re all OT students enduring and persevering together. It’s so nice to know that I’m not in this alone. Or that I’m not the only one struggling :P. The friends I’ve met are funny, kind, gracious, and caring, and I’m so glad that I have them for support and fun for these next two years (hopefully more!).
2. I have never done so much public speaking in such a short amount of time ever. I counted it up, and I did 10 presentations this semester. Some were longer than others, some in groups and some by myself. Public speaking was never something I loved or thought I was good at, but after these last 16 weeks, I really do feel more confident speaking in front of people. I don’t love it anymore than I did in the beginning, but it’s not as bad as I once thought.
3. I’ve struggled with being genuinely thankful throughout the semester, and probably will continue to do so, but I’ve learned a little more about being thankful in the midst of craziness. Yes, teachers are ridiculous, assignments seem unnecessary, but I’m learning you have to suck it up a little and endure the annoyances because honestly, there’s nothing to complain about. I’m in school for something that I really love and want to do, and that’s something to be thankful for.
P.S. My brother got married! More to process….haha but that’s for another post :) In the meantime, I’m going to enjoy my oh so long one week break! Haha
Funny how the sun can affect your day. Today was beautiful and there’s so much to be thankful for.
- The warmth and sunshine from the sun makes staying at school all day not so bad.
- Being able to eat lunch outside with friends is the part of Wednesdays I enjoy the most.
- My lecture/presentation is over with. What a relief to finish that! The name “Eleanor Clarke Slagle” might be forever tarnished because of this class, which is too bad. She seemed like a decent lady haha.
- Another huge blessing is one of my quizzes that was originally next Friday was changed to an online open book quiz. Hallelujah! I originally scheduled my flight to San Francisco RIGHT after that quiz next Friday for my brother’s wedding. I was nervous it would be late and I’d be late for the rehearsal, but now I can fly up in the morning stress free!
- God is good all the time! He is my strength and my foundation. He gives me peace when some nights I go to bed with a knot in my stomach. Thank you Lord.
It’s been a while since my last post, but no worries, I’m still thankful, and haven’t turned into a bitter complainer. Easter weekend came and went and it really has given me something to be thankful for. Above all else, I am so so thankful for the reason why we celebrate Easter. That the Son of God came down to live on this earth as a human, and died on a cross, so that people might be able to be with God again. I’m so thankful for a love that is far more perfect, pure, and unconditional than I could ever find on this earth. I’m so thankful that a God could love someone so much that he restores the broken and sinful.
This week is gonna be a challenging one, but today I’m thankful for:
- good time management skills kicking into high gear
- three presentations this week that will stretch and grow me
- the luxury of time to watch Dexter all afternoon with Brent
Week 13! BRING IT.
So thankful for:
- holy week. a reminder of God’s love and grace - the ultimate sacrifice and death on a cross for me.
- having peace about my group presentation tomorrow.
- eating oxtail stew for dinner. I haven’t had that in a looong time.
- good Powerpoint skills…makes my life much easier
- my brother’s wedding in less than 3 weeks! holy moly…
It’s been 7 days since I started my little challenge to myself, and I have to admit, it’s been pretty successful. Maybe it was because this week wasn’t as difficult in general, but I really do believe my attitude has begun to change. Instead of coming home and complaining about this teacher, that assignment, I really am trying to make an honest attempt to see the beauty, joy, and excitement in the little things.
Today, I’m grateful for:
- the amazing weather. It was so sunny and warm, so summer-y
- today marks the end of 12 weeks of school! Yay!
- actually seeing a presentation of some practical value to occupational therapy instead of endless presentations on chapters in a book (that was kind of a back-handed way of giving thanks…hah)
- less traffic on the commute back to Irvine
- the luxury of being able to stay in Irvine on the weekend
At this moment I’m thankful for:
- no school today and being able to stay in my pjs until 2. Actually I could’ve stayed in them longer, but decided it was kinda gross.
- being able to cook dinner for my parents. It’s nice sometimes taking a break and cook a nice meal for them. Besides, they cook for me most other nights, and they had a long day of work.
- actually starting to attack my literature review that has been a stress in the back of my mind and will continue until May 13. Although I’m not exactly sure I’m even doing it right…
- not having to prepare for a presentation tomorrow :)
Wednesdays are my long days. Some Wednesdays, I come home drained, cranky, hungry, and exhausted. But not today. Today I only came home hungry. :)
Today I’m thankful for:
- getting enough rest last night and waking up refreshed
- having a break between classes that was actually a break…no group meetings, no assignments we are frantically trying to finish…
- enjoying our break outside in the beautiful sunshine with great friends and good conversation
- finishing another presentation…I believe its 7 down, 5 more to go?
- cheap health care provided by CSUDH - got my blood drawn and tested for $10
Thank you God for the grace you give me each day. Thank you for the energy and strength to persevere. Thank you thank you thank you. Can’t do it on my own.
May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.
Things I’m thankful for (in the past two days):
- being able to run in Back Bay (4.15 miles yeyuhh!) The weather was beautiful, and I didn’t feel like my lungs or legs were going to completely die :)
- celebrating birthdays and having fun with friends at D&Bs
- finishing prep work for a horrendous case study
- watching Dancing With The Stars. (NO SHAME. this show is entertaining!)
P.S. If you are uninterested in these posts (I may keep doing these for a while…) then ignore them please! I don’t wanna spam your Tumblrs, but this is actually kinda therapeutic for me haha
I’m thankful for/that:
- Pastor Gabe’s message today about submission and surrendering to God through prayer. It was a great reminder to ask God to help us want the things he desires more than the things we desire. Your will, not mine.
- I finally completed all the things needed to start fieldwork in the summer! Huzzah! Huge weight off my shoulders. Just a waiting game for my live scan fingerprinting.
- Petra tonight, hermaneutics, pizza, and friends. (mostly thankful for the pizza of course…)
- Loco moco for lunch with el Brento. Hmm I wonder if many of my future posts will be about food.
- God is good. All the time.
What a challenging week back from spring break. Physically, emotionally, mentally. Transitioning back to school after letting my mind rest for a week, frustrating situations, frustrating teachers, long to do lists. I know people aren’t perfect, this OT program isn’t perfect, but it’s so easy for my heart to grow bitter and complain, and to ignore the blessings right in front of my eyes. I’ve been struggling with this ever since probably…week 2 of this program haha. Weird how easily and quickly I forget how much I desperately wanted to be in this program and how thankful I was in December. :P
So to fight this unhealthy pessimistic-nobody-wants-to-hear-my-complaining mood, I wanted to challenge myself to write 3 things I’m thankful for each day (or at least on the more challenging days) in order to remind me how little I have to complain about. Even with this challenge, I dragged my feet yesterday to write this because I didn’t know if my attitude was going to be very genuine. Today is a new start, a new outlook, hopefully some rejuvenation to finish the rest of this semester.
1. I’m thankful for my OT friends who can realllly understand and empathize with my excitement and frustrations of school.
2. I’m thankful for such a productive Saturday. Seriously, thank you God for this extra energy and perseverance to get a WHOLE lot of work done. I really needed this bit of encouragement.
3. I’m thankful for my parents who completely support me financially (and support me in other ways too!). That is a huge blessing that I know not everyone is able to experience. Man, I totally take that one for granted.
This is just the tip of the iceberg. There are plenty of other things to be thankful for. Praise God :)
1 I cried out to God for help;
I cried out to God to hear me.
2 When I was in distress, I sought the Lord;
at night I stretched out untiring hands,
and I would not be comforted.
3 I remembered you, God, and I groaned;
I meditated, and my spirit grew faint.[b]
4 You kept my eyes from closing;
I was too troubled to speak.
5 I thought about the former days,
the years of long ago;
6 I remembered my songs in the night.
My heart meditated and my spirit asked:
7 “Will the Lord reject forever?
Will he never show his favor again?
8 Has his unfailing love vanished forever?
Has his promise failed for all time?
9 Has God forgotten to be merciful?
Has he in anger withheld his compassion?”
10 Then I thought, “To this I will appeal:
the years when the Most High stretched out his right hand.
11 I will remember the deeds of the LORD;
yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago.
12 I will consider all your works
and meditate on all your mighty deeds.”
13 Your ways, God, are holy.
What god is as great as our God?
14 You are the God who performs miracles;
you display your power among the peoples.
15 With your mighty arm you redeemed your people,
the descendants of Jacob and Joseph.
16 The waters saw you, God,
the waters saw you and writhed;
the very depths were convulsed.
17 The clouds poured down water,
the heavens resounded with thunder;
your arrows flashed back and forth.
18 Your thunder was heard in the whirlwind,
your lightning lit up the world;
the earth trembled and quaked.
19 Your path led through the sea,
your way through the mighty waters,
though your footprints were not seen.
20 You led your people like a flock
by the hand of Moses and Aaron.
In times of chaos and destruction, You are a sovereign and almighty God. You are love and You are holy. In times of uncertainty and doubts, God You are all powerful. Lord, protect and save and heal the people in Japan. Only You can save. May you bring Yourself glory through all of this.
(images from cnn.com)
It’s only the middle of the third week of school, and I feel really overwhelmed and burned out. There are good days and worse days, but OT school has proved to be more challenging in ways I did not expect. The amount of work involved seems to never end. The expectations the teachers have of us seems unreasonably high sometimes. I’ve doubted myself and am not sure if I’m qualified enough to be here. It’s been a tougher three weeks of adjustment that I thought. And sometimes, like right now, all I feel like doing is complaining and whining. But I know in my head that I have so much to be grateful for and nothing to complain about. There are a lot of things I’m loving and learning about, but my body tells me I’m tired.
God, I need Your strength. My tendency is to try to do this on my own, but I can’t do this without You. Change my attitude, my heart, and my perspective.
My flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength of my heart
and my portion forever.
9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
2 Corinthians 12:9-10
Today was a slightly strange experience. I had my first day of OT school, and it felt like kindergarten and freshmen year of college all at the same time. But it was different in many ways, thank goodness. We’ll start with kindergarten…
I’m semi moved back at home, living in Cerritos for the days I have class and so my parents are a lot more involved in my daily schedule and activities. It’s taking a little getting used to, and honestly, I need a lot more patience to deal with them sometimes, but I know they mean well. It’s just weird, giving them a far more detailed picture of my day than I’m used to or sometimes willing to give. So this morning as I leave for school, my mom goes, “Have a good first day!” and I really felt like kindergarten again. Like as if she packed my sack lunch and will be picking me up after school or something. (She did not do either, thank goodness). Here’s a picture I found of my first day of kindergarten. :)
Second, I really felt like a freshmen again. I’m in an unfamiliar campus, having to look up things on a map, and make new friends, and share my toys with the other kids. Oh wait no, that was kindergarten. But anyways, it’s a lot of unfamiliarity, anxiety not knowing where things are, if we’re going to be late, what the classes are like, what the teachers will be like. It was a weird dejavu.
But it was a good beginning nonetheless. Here were some ways it was not like kindergarten or freshman year.
1. You have the same exact schedule as your classmates. Therefore we’re gonna see each other each day, each class, doing everything together pretty much.
2. We all have the same end goal. Since I’ve figured out I want to be an OT, it’s been rare to find people who even know what that is, let alone an entire class of people actually wanting to become one. It’s really cool. :)
3. Everyone is not the same age, and I’m probably the youngest. Our class comprises of people just out of college, most probably late 20s, and some that are older who are making their 2nd, 3rd, or maybe 4th career changes. It’s weird knowing I’m the youngest, but people much older than me are still considered my peers and colleagues.
4. I’m commuting, and it makes me feel like I’m sorta in the work world having to fight through the traffic and time everything a little better.
Even though being in 18 units of school again is kind of tiring just thinking about it, I’m so thankful I’m here. I’m excited to get to know my classmates better, excited to learn a ton more about occupational therapy, and actually have classes that are geared for what I want to do. I can’t say I’ve had many of those at UCI. Also, I’m excited because all the work isn’t coming at me high speed yet. :P
It’s been one year since I started this blog, and I’m mildly impressed I’m still writing in it. I have a bad habit of letting days, weeks, months go by without any time to stop and reflect on everything that has happened, but tumblr has forced me to think and collect my thoughts in a manner that is somewhat coherent. Some days it’s a struggle to write honestly and freely what’s going on in my life, and other times it’s a joy to share. Nonetheless, thank you tumblr for providing a healthy outlet to express how I’m feeling at the moment, remember the lessons I’ve learned, and allowing me to connect with others on a deeper level. :)
Yay one year! Let’s see how long I keep this up…
Today is my second favorite holiday of the year, right behind Christmas. Yeah, it’s probably the biggest eating holiday of the year, which boosts its awesome points up at least 50, but I can’t help but feel all the warm and fuzzies that come along with Thanksgiving. I love the feeling of family togetherness, full bellies, and grateful hearts. I love the traditions of playing in turkey bowls, watching football, helping in the kitchen, or just some good old fashioned quality family time…talking and hanging out.
However you celebrate Thanksgiving, whether a big celebration with your family and friends, or a quiet dinner at home, I think it’s so important to remember all that we can be thankful for. The list is probably limitless in what we can come up with, and this heart of thanksgiving shouldn’t be constrained to just today.
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
Let’s walk down memory lane, just few years back…I was “on track” to becoming a teacher. I loved kids, was completing the Educational Studies minor, and knew the steps I needed to completely in order to be a teacher. I completed my fieldwork hours in the classroom, and realized this wasn’t for me.
B later told me about Child Life Specialists, and it really intrigued me. I made tons of phone calls just trying to figure out what the heck they actually do, and volunteered at CHOC…but one conversation with a lady changed my mind. I realized it was too emotional, too real for me to handle as a day to day job. At that point, I was feeling pretty lost, and it was one of the scariest feelings not knowing in the slightest what I wanted to do next. I don’t do well with unknowns…
It was time to research, pray, observe, pray, to figure out what profession would fit me best and where I’d really be happy. I’m beyond grateful that I discovered the field of occupational therapy because I know from my own experiences and those of my friends that figuring out what you want to do with the rest of your life is beyond difficult. The more I learned about it, I really fell in love with it and was amazed at how it seems like a perfect fit. So seriously, if you don’t know what you want to do after college, or after whatever your next step is, learn what is out there. There are so many jobs people don’t even know exist that may be perfect for you :) (Which is probably why I’ll have to explain to almost every person I talk to what occupational therapy even is, but I don’t mind.)
Long story short, I’m kind of overwhelmed that I got accepted into CSUDH MSOT program. It feels pretty surreal that after all the classes, the stressful applying process, and overcoming bumps in the road, everything that I’ve been working for has arrived. I’m excited for the future, everything that I’ll be learning, the people I’ll meet, and taking an even larger step forward. I don’t doubt for one second that God has opened so many doors for me and shut others so that I am right where I am supposed to be at this very moment.
Let me ask you something. If someone prays for patience, you think God gives them patience? Or does he give them the opportunity to be patient? If he prayed for courage, does God give him courage, or does he give him opportunities to be courageous? If someone prayed for the family to be closer, do you think God zaps them with warm fuzzy feelings, or does he give them opportunities to love each other? - Evan Almighty, 2007
Laying on the couch in my pjs, watching Evan Almighty, it’s hard to ignore some profound truths in it that are actually pretty Biblical. Regardless of whether this movie was meant to be more silly and comical than anything, it displays, to a small extent, what God is like and how He answers prayer.
God isn’t like some genie willing to grant you your wishes. There is so much more depth to be understood about who He is (a lot that we may never understand), but what I am figuring out more and more is that He cares so much more about the development of our character and heart than our immediate comfort. He knows more than our mortal minds can comprehend, including what we need and what is best for us.
8For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD.
9(N) For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
I SURVIVED THIS WEEK. :D
Anatomy midterm Anatomy practical 2 day Physiology midterm
I feel I can finally breathe a little and enjoy myself without anything hanging over my head for a while. Super happy it’s the weekend (starting tonight!) :)
- watch Toy Story 3 in 3D at the dollar theater
- C&M’s baby shower
- watch Snow Dogs & eat chorizo burritos (YES…thats right..we’re watching Snow Dogs…with Cuba Gooding Jr.)
- Harvest Festival at Wintersburg..where we are in charge of the jumpy house again! (apparently “normal” people call it bouncy houses. Whatevs.)
- WHATEVER THE HECK I WANT. WHADDUP! (Can you picture me saying that out loud? Me neither…)
Dear Anatomy and Physiology,
You are literally killing my brain. Slowly, but surely. Hours I have pored over you to understand more, and more, and yet still I discover there is so much more that I still need to know. Please be nice to me this week. Thanks!
Please don’t fizzle out on me. Even though Anatomy and Physiology are being kind of intrusive taking over everything, let’s try to cooperate at least until the end of this week and then we can part our ways for a while. How does that sound?
This past week, I’ve been spending some good quality time with God reading through Jeremiah, probably the first time I’ve ever gone through the entire book…and I feel like I’m learning tons! It gives a really good picture of God’s heart..what He desires, what He hates, what His character is like. It’s forced me to wrestle with issues I’ve kind of been trying to ignore for a while and facing my sin straight on.
This past year, I learned some difficult lessons on how God would rather you be completely honest with Him with the way you live, than trying to do all the “right” or “good” things but your heart is far from Him. Genuine faith, where the intent is pure, and a genuine action follows. Hypocrisy is far from what Christianity should be, even though we often lives our lives as people who say one thing but do another. But these last few days, I’ve been really torn, kinda feeling broken, aware of my weaknesses and sins. I was torn between trying to love God by obeying Him, while being honest with myself and my true intentions. A lot of the time, I’m selfish with my time, my schedule, my resources. I gossip, I judge, I do not act out of love. My compassion for people comes and goes. I can be cynical and bitter, ungrateful and inconsiderate. I try, I fail, I give up. It’s a sobering process, knowing what kind of rut sin can get you in.
But each day, God has revealed that I am not stuck in my sin. He has made a way already for me to live a life of freedom and of grace. Paul says in Romans 8:
10But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness. 11And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you.
Jesus, help me. Show me how to love You more so that obeying Your Word wouldn’t be so hard sometimes. The power of Christ, lives in me. That is something to sing and praise God for. :)
My roommate warned me to avoid the Albertsons on Campus today because there were a million UCI students buying stuff after moving in to either the dorms or apartments. At that moment, it had completely slipped my mind that UCI starts this week, and that doesn’t include me anymore. No more welcome week, no tabling, no interfellowship kickoff, no classes on campus. It’s a pretty weird and almost surreal feeling considering I’m still living in Irvine, and definitely still feel like an undergrad. But somehow I’m not apart of that anymore. I feel like I’m in denial or something. Taking prereqs at a community college just isn’t the same.
I’m not sure where I’m getting at, but it’s just a weird feeling.
On a complete tangent, all my tv shows are coming back this week! And I’m WAY too excited about it.
All I can say is how GOOD God is. All I can do is praise Him for how gracious He is. I was able to get into physio lecture and lab, and I really felt like there was a lot going against me. I knew there was nothing I could do but pray pray pray, and let God do the rest. He answered my (and many others) prayers and performed a mini miracle (in my opinion) today. And I know that this somewhat small but significant journey had a purpose. While I wanted what was easiest, which was…to get into the class easy peasy, God had something else in mind. He taught me more about what faith looks like and requires. He reminded me how little control I have over my future, that things can go awry even with the most precise and intentional planning on my part. He humbled me forcing me to rely solely on Him.
Some may think that getting this class isn’t a huge deal. And in reality, it isn’t. If I don’t get the class, it isn’t the end of the world. And some may think this is just good luck. But this demonstration of God hearing and answering my prayers means a lot to me. Things have come relatively easy for me, and this was a small, but significant struggle that has developed a little more character and a more grateful heart. I know this is not the end. There will be more situations where I can continue to learn and grow and be challenged, but I’m so thankful that I was given this opportunity to test my faith in the God I have believed in all my life.
“We were made by God and for God, and until you figure that out, life isn’t going to make sense. Life is a series of problems: Either you are in one now, you’re just coming out of one, or you’re getting ready to go into another one. The reason for this is that God is more interested in your character than your comfort; God is more interested in making your life holy than He is in making your life happy. We can be reasonably happy here on earth, but that’s not the goal of life. The goal is to grow in character, in Christ likeness.” - Rick Warren
In a few days school starts again, but this time it’s not going to be like any other quarter at UCI. I’m enrolled in anatomy + lab, which is the first real science class I’ve probably ever had since high school. I’m also petitioning for physio + lab, and next week I’m going to have to attend 4 physio lectures and 6 labs to see if I can add the class. I’m going to be competing with 30 people for each lab…which adds up to 180 people technically. The odds aren’t really that great, but I’ve heard stories that give me hope, and those that kind of discourage me.
As I hung out with some friends tonight, I realized how I’ve been mentally approaching this all the wrong way. After the whole shock of the situation wore off, I think that I pretended I was content with however this ended up. I tried not to even think about it or get my hopes up because I didn’t want to be disappointed. But tonight I realized that my heart and mind are totally not where it should be. Instead of tricking myself to not be disappointed and pretending that I’m trusting God, I should be fully aware that God is sovereign. God is good. God knows whats up. And He knows whether I’m going to get that class, whether I’m going to apply and get into grad school in January…or not. And I need to have faith and the assurance that whatever happens, I will be doing exactly what He wants me to be doing. If it’s to wait a year to apply, I know that God is still good. If He asks me to change everything completely, I know that God is still good.
I also know that God is capable of doing anything and everything, and getting me into a physiology class is piece of cake for Him. His ability to accomplish what I feel is difficult isn’t what I need to be concerned about. God, give me joy in Your plans for me. Increase my faith. Give me peace. You don’t have a plan A and plan B. You have Your plan. And it’s perfect. You give purpose to everything.
Sorry Tumblr, I’ve been neglecting you. Probably because nothing crazy has been going on in my life…and it’s kind of nice. I don’t really have any responsibilities right now and I just enjoy each day however little or much I do. :) I think that’s how summer should be. Carefree.
Kauai, Summer 2009
This week has been full of highs and lows, a rollercoaster of emotions. I started out the week studying for the GRE hardcore because my test was on Thursday. I was starting to freak out a little more and be more anxious about the whole thing, playing the terrible mental game of “what if’s” and thinking of worst case scenarios. But Tuesday, I went to AACF’s Summer meeting and we studied the passage when God tests Abraham, asking him to sacrifice his only son, Isaac. And Abraham obeys. No questions. No hesitations. His faith is so strong in God that He is faithful to His promises. Studying this passage reminded me of who God is and how I don’t need to be so nervous about the GRE and all the consequences of how I do on the test. I had a convo with God surrendering my anxiety and my expectations of the GRE to Him. Whatever my score, whatever happens, even if my plans are changed, I have faith He will provide and that He has a plan for me. And praise God, I did better than expected!
That was Thursday. Fast forward to Friday morning. A friend starts talking to me about classes at community colleges, and I randomly decide to look up the classes I still need to take (anatomy & physio). I happen to stumble on the detail that anatomy is a prereq for physio, meaning I can’t take them simultaneously like I had planned, and can’t apply to one of the grad programs that starts in January like I intended. This pretty much rocked me because my plan of applying and going to grad school in January was messed up. I had a mini meltdown, tears and all. I was so mad that I had overlooked such an important detail, and so mad that all my careful planning was flawed and my plans of possibly starting school in January were out the window. Long story short, I messed up. I can’t blame anyone else but myself. Fortunately there are a few options I’m trying to figure out, but it’s still not resolved. Basically, I need a lot of prayer and faith that somehow I’ll get into physio. I gave myself a few hours to be upset, but I started to own up that I make mistakes. I can overlook details. I don’t have complete control over everything. And honestly, it was hard to swallow, and it still makes me sad that I messed this up. But I thought about the passage with Abraham and Isaac, and how I made a conscious decision to give the GRE up to God, being content with the outcome. This unfortunate situation is no different. Whether or not I do get into physio, or whether or not I postpone my grad school plans back a year or whatever it may be, I know that God is faithful. Life is so much less stressful knowing I’m not the one in control. That I don’t have to have it all together.
Last night, we had worship practice for Sunday, and we played “All For You” by Starfield, and this one part of the song spoke directly to me. This is the prayer I need to be praying:
What is it in me
That hangs on for so long
Why do I fight the tears that come?
I work so hard to
Keep in control when
All that I want is to let go
I’ll take this life
And lay it down
I’m letting go
I’m letting go
My hopes and dreams
Here at Your feet
I’m letting go
I’m letting go
His plans are higher than mine. Whatever happens happens. It sucks, but I know He is in control. And I’m so thankful I am not.
It’s been 8 years! Sounds ridiculous, but thank you God for showing us so much grace in our relationship and being the glue that has kept us together through the ups and downs. I don’t want this to get all gushy and gross, but here is a tribute to our anniversary :)
8 reasons why I still want to be with you after all this time…
- You can make me laugh by doing the most ridiculous things like making a weird noise or singing “meow mix”.
- You are a better cook than me. (You get bonus points for that!)
- You have made me a better person by not tolerating my whining or guilt tripping.
- You understand me more than anyone else.
- You have old man tendencies that complement my old lady tendencies.
- You love kids almost as much as I do.
- You don’t pretend to be anyone or anything you aren’t.
- You serve and love the same God as me.
I guess if I thought hard enough, I could think of a few more…;) Looking back, it’s insane how much we have grown and learned as individuals and as a couple. It’s almost embarrassing thinking of how we were back then. And in 8 more years (or probably less) we’ll look back and think of how immature we are now. But that’s okay, as long as you’re still my best friend in 8 more years :)
I was able to go on vacation to NYC for a week, and it was one of the most fun vacations I’ve taken! Maybe because B was there, that could’ve been a major factor, but also I looove New York! (and I bought a sweatshirt to prove how much I <3 NY) I went there about 6 years ago, but this time we were able to enjoy the city more and not feel obligated to do all the super touristy things. The city has so much history and character, and of course delicious food! I like looking up at the skyscrapers and appreciating (with my limited mind) the intricate and detailed architecture. The skyline is beautiful and the people were surprisingly friendly. I love taking the subway, I think it’s one of the greatest ideas ever. It is so efficient to travel from place to place there, I seriously wished LA had an awesome public transportation system like NY. Even the weather was surprising perfect the first few days we were there (75 degrees low humidity and sunny! Let’s forget the heatwave we endured the last few days though…)
But what kind of surprised me was in the middle of the trip, I had this weird desire to come back and live there. I don’t think it was one of those, “I’d want to live there if I could just eat to my heart’s content and not have a care in the world” kind of live there. It was a more serious feeling, one where I’d want to know what it’d be like to live there, with the responsibilities that come with reality. Not forever, but just long enough. If things work out, I might be able to do my clinical work for OT school there, which might be the perfect opportunity. Honestly, who knows. This could be a fleeting thought that will come and go. Maybe it’ll stick with me until I do it. If I do this, I think it’d be completely out of my character, I don’t do stuff like this. I really would be content being in socal for the rest of my life, and I’m coming to realize that this is nothing to be ashamed of. But theres something about that city that intrigues me. :) It’s exciting, I’m not usually this “adventurous” (even in my hypothetical plans hah! That’s adventurous enough for my grandma-self)
Now for some photos…
Beautiful night skyline
My parents got upgraded seats at the Yankees game and got onto the big screen!
Top of the Rock
The most delicious pastrami sandwich ever. I’m still thinking about it…
We <3 NY!
Today’s the day! I woke up extra early unintentionally I guess because I was excited or nervous or something. I’m not sure why wearing an ugly over-sized gown and a cardboard square on your head makes it official, but to me, it does. I still don’t know how I’m feeling, but in a few hours I will have concluded my time as a student at UCI. People ALWAYS tell you it goes by so fast, but what the heck, I swear my time passed by even faster.
Actually, now that I’m writing this, I am intentionally going to make an effort to soak up today, and enjoy it. Today, I’m going to be thankful, really embrace this exact moment of my life, celebrate the end of my amazing time in college, and be excited to look forward to so many more experiences ahead.
Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever…This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalm 118:1, 24